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Reference Recordings is thrilled to present a new release of virtuoso solo improvisations by David Bowie’s long-time music director!


The Bowie Variations


“Whatever Mike lends his hands to invariably becomes something magical.”–David Bowie.

Beginning in 1972, super-versatile pianist Mike Garson performed, toured internationally and recorded with one of the most creative figures in popular music, David Bowie.

Garson writes, “When I met David, I sensed that he was an immense artist and a songwriter with a flair for great melodies and unique harmonies. The Ziggy Stardust tour changed the course of my life in many ways and began a working relationship and a special friendship that has spanned four decades.”

Having played the Bowie songbook in concert countless times, Garson always had the ambition to record his own original variations on these well-known themes. This is the year it came to fruition!

Thanks to the advanced digital technology of the Yamaha Disklavier piano, Garson was able to create several exciting sonic overlays, without abandoning RR’s audiophile approach to recording. “It’s like having six hands!” he exclaimed.

Recorded in the fine natural acoustics of the Oxnard, California, Center for the Performing Arts (venue of several previous RR successes), this program has realistic spatial characteristics not possible with standard studio techniques. Grammy® award winning engineer Keith Johnson has created another touchstone piano recording.

Review: "Garson doesn't just do straight jazz treatments; he moves through classical, pop and even avant-garde genres here and there. Most interesting." —John Henry,Audiophile Audition

Review: "...each and every track is surprising, involving, and just superb...and what a recording it is! This HDCD-encoded disc is perhaps the best-sounding piano disc I have ever encountered...If you're a Bowie fan, you should hear this disc. If you're a fan of jazz you should, too. And even if you just want to hear just how good a CD can sound, with a disc able to push your system to its limits, this is one you should have." --Andrew Everard,What Hi-Fi - complete review

Track Listing: 1 Space Oddity; 2 John, I’m Only Dancing; 3 Life On Mars; 4 Heroes; 5 Ashes To Ashes; 6 Variations on “Changes”; 7 Let's Dance; 8 Battle For Britain/Loneliest Guy/Disco King; 9 Tribute to David; 10 Wild is the Wind; Bonus Track: 11 Space Oddity–take 2

RR-123HDCD - Mike Garson - The Bowie Variations - $16.98


Mike Garson's

Incredible Chops!
What do Freddie Hubbard, Stan Getz, Elvin Jones, Lee Konitz, Stanley Clarke, Eddie Daniels, Joe Farrell, David Bowie, Nine Inch Nails, The Smashing Pumpkins, Gwen Stefani, Seal, the Los Angeles Philharmonic and Martha Reeves (to name a few) have in common? The answer is, Mike Garson has played with them all!.

These have been called “The fastest fingers in jazz.” David Bowie, for whom Garson has long been music director, says, “He’s the best rock & roll pianist I know.” Recording group Free Flight took advantage of his classical training, and Hollywood calls when it needs a virtuoso assoluto. In short, Mike Garson is a phenomenon, able to mimic Bill Evans or Liberace on command, or to soothe an audience with New Age hypnotics. But he’s at his very best wearing his “jazz hat.”

Supported by a stellar cast of Brian Bromberg (acoustic bass), Ralph Humphries (drums) and Eric Marienthal (alto saxophone), Garson turns in a memorable set of originals and imaginative arrangements of standards. Most tracks were previously available on RR-53-—long out of print—plus, for this re-release, we’ve added Garson’s “take no prisoners” improvisation on Gershwin themes—also long out of print. The package is graced by his own computer art. Is there no limit to Garson’s talent?

Everyone at RR thinks this is one of our finest jazz productions. Recorded acoustically at the Oxnard, California, Civic Auditorium, Mike Garson’s Jazz Hat was captured in three-dimensional, high-resolution
HDCD sound by RR’s resident guru, “Prof.” Keith Johnson, recipient of seven GRAMMY® nominations for engineering.

Track Listing - 1 Rumble; 2 All Blues; 3 It’s You Or No One; 4 A Song For You; 5 Waltz for Bill; 6 A Night in Tunisia; 7 A Gershwin Fantasia; 8 Nardis; 9 Count Your Blessings.

RR-114 HDCD - MIKE GARSON's - JAZZ HAT - $16.98


Reference Recordings is proud to announce Brasileiro Soul, a Brazilian jazz/pop album from versatile singer/songwriter/guitarist Reinaldo Brahn.


Reinaldo Brahn


Talented young Brazilian singer-songwriter-guitarist, Reinaldo Brahn, plays rich and complex music, with a killer band and exotic percussion by famed Jim Brock!

Brasileiro Soul is a collection of fourteen original songs penned by Brazilian guitarist and singer Reinaldo Brahn.

• The deep heritage of his guitar style, along with his rich unmistakable voice, makes Brasileiro Soul as provocative as the land that cultivated it.

• Veteran percussionist and producer Jim Brock refers to Reinaldo Brahn as “the new voice of Brasil.”

• Gorgeous lyrics in Portugese (with one song in English).

• Young guitarist Reinaldo Brahn grew up listening to the jazzy samba music of his native Brazil. On Brasilero Soul he weaves that heritage with new Brazilian pop styles.

• He left the renowned Brazilian vocal group Soul Makube to embark on a solo career. Gathering influences from Gilberto Gil, Djavan and Caetano Veloso, Reinaldo began touring his original music throughout Brazil, and then in 2006 brought his music to the United States.

• The sonics from Grammy-winning engineer Keith Johnson will ensure enthusiastic reception by audiophiles and music lovers

• Recorded at venerable Reflection Sound Studios in Charlote, NC, scene of several RR past successes.

Reinaldo Brahn, vocals & acoustic guitar; Jim Brock, percussion; Tim Gordon, winds; Steve Kim, electric bass; Al Sergel, drums; Mark Stallings, keyboards; Dustin Hofsess, electric guitar; Jon Thornton, trumpet/flugelhorn

Track Listing: Alma de atriz (Soul of an Actress); A Procura da Razão (Search for a Reason); Paisagem Ancorada (Anchored Landscape); Põe o pé na estrada (Sincere Love); Onde Está (Where is It ?); As lagrimas Consolam (Tears Console); Anjo de Julho (Angel of July); So Nos Dois (Two of Us); Toda Mulher (Every Woman); Tarde (Dusk); Out of the Blue; Wondering; No Colla da Serra (In the Lap of the Mountain); Tempo (Time)

RR-124HDCD - Reinaldo Brahn - Brasileiro Soul - $16.98


The Chicago Sessions

CLARK TERRY, one of the “grand old men” of jazz, enjoyed a stellar career as soloist with the big bands of Duke Ellington, Count Basie, and The Tonight Show, among others. RR had the grand opportunity to record his fabled trumpet and flugelhorn artistry with Bob Lark and the DePaul University Big band in two programs, both now out of print. THE CHICAGO SESSIONS is a “cream of the crop” selection from both, sonically fine-tuned by “Prof.” Johnson to sound even better than the originals. Extra added attractions are two tunes with scat vocals by Clark Terry’s alter-ego “Mumbles.”

Clark Terry’s career in jazz spans more than sixty years. He performed for seven U.S. Presidents, and was a Jazz Ambassador for State Department tours in the Middle East and Africa. More than fifty jazz festivals in all seven continents still feature him. He received a Grammy Award, two Grammy certificates, three Grammy nominations, thirteen honorary doctorates, keys to cities, lifetime achievements and halls of fame awards. He was knighted in Germany and is the recipient of the French Order of Arts and Letters. Clark’s star on the Walk of Fame, and his Black World History Museum’s life-sized wax figure can both be visited in his hometown, St. Louis, Missouri.

NEW REVIEW: “…the sound is superb. Terry’s signature warm tone is beautifully captured, and highlighted just enough to bring it ever-so-slightly front and center. The soundstage is quite large and lifelike, with a tremendous sense of depth and ambience. Dynamics are impressively natural – easy and mellow in ballads, and explosive during the many swinging moments…a very rewarding set.” -- Wayne Garcia - The Absolute Sound, 12/07

Track Listing - 1 Just Squeeze Me; 2 C.T.’s Express; 3 The Star-Crossed Lovers; 4 Jessica’s Day; 5 Harlem Airshaft; 6 Swinging the Blues; 7 Do Nothing ‘til You Hear from Me; 8 I Want A Little Girl; 9 Easy Does; It 10 Launching Pad; 11 Cottontail; 12 Moten Swing; 13 Something To Live For.

RR-111 HDCD - Clark Terry - The Chicago Sessions - $16.98


with a bang!

Super-versatile pianist Mike Garson, best known as long-time music director for David Bowie, is a jazzman at heart. Doing what he loves best, with all-star acoustic backup, he made this set in 1986, and it became a long-running audiophile hit. Included are a number of standards, Garson originals and a group improv. If you like good jazz and missed this, don’t hestitate.

RR-20 Mike Garson SERENDIPITY $16.98


"Tremendous playing on a variety of wild Gypsy swing songs." --Mike Holmes, - Full Review

"San Francisco has the earned reputation as a city that is unique and goes its own independent direction. I think that can also be said of the Hot Club of San Francisco, a creative band that masters Gypsy Jazz, but gives it new shape, sound, and inspiration on this entertaining CD." -- Harvey Barkan, L.A. Jazz Scene

"The impression that the musicians are there in the room, full-sized, is downright eerie. That and the lively swing of these fine musicians make this recording a must-have." --Rejskind, Ultra High Fidelity

"It is a reminder that this joyous style of music is timeless and, in the right hands, exciting and fresh." --Joseph Taylor, - Full Review

Yerba Buena Bounce

With YERBA BUENA BOUNCE, its tenth CD, The Hot Club of San Franciso confirms its reputation as America's longest-running and finest Gypsy Jazz ensemble. Inspired explorations of Django Reinhardt's tunes, originals and more, are captured in shimmering HDCD sound.

The Hot Club of San Francisco is a quintet of accomplished and versatile musicians who celebrate Django Reinhardt's and Stephane Grappelli's renowned Hot Club de France. The ensemble borrows the all-string instrumentation of three guitars, violin and bass from the original Hot Club, but breathes new life into the music with innovative arrangements of classic tunes and original compositions from the group's superb lead guitarist, Paul Mehling. Hearing the ensemble takes the listener back to the 1930s and to the small, smoky jazz clubs of Paris. The music of The Hot Club of San Francisco has entranced audiences around the globe for more than a decade.

Mandolinist DAVID GRISMAN, father of Dawg music and good friend of The Hot Club, makes a special guest appearance on two tracks. The set is further enhanced by bandoneon virtuoso Seth Asarno, and two bonus tracks feature the quintet augmented by three Dixieland horns!

Recorded by multi-Grammy-nominated "Prof." Keith Johnson at Fantasy Studios in Berkeley, California, the YERBA BUENA BOUNCE sessions benefited from the historic ambience, scene of hundreds of classic jazz and rock recordings. Using his own custom-built microphones and electronics (as always), Johnson was able to utilize some of Fantasy's unique facilities, such as a legendary echo chamber, to add luster to his always life-like soundscapes.


"...violinist Evan Price and guitarist Paul Mehling leapt into the stratosphere with flurries of notes... Price's tone was sweet and plangent. And, oh, momma, is Mehling ever one fast-fingered guitarist. Whooowee, what runs, what flurries." --Wes Phillips, Stereophile 12/2007

"It's the synergies, combination of highly competent execution, accessibility and the fact that they swing harder than anyone else out there that make The Hot Club of San Francisco the Count Basie of gypsy Swing." --Monterey Jacques, - Full Review

"What impresses me most about this CD is the continuing musical maturation of Paul and his violinist partner Evan Price, along with an increasing group cohesion overall. As the years go by, they seem to have gained a certain measure of confidence in execution and a more emotionally direct approach to swinging, as if they know exactly what they want and how to get it. Particularly sizzling are "Mystery Pacific" and "Rythme Futur." -Don Mopsick, Editor Jazz Me News - Complete Review

"These guys pull us back to the glorious sounds of Django Reinhardt and Stéphane Grappelli, (with) the Gypsy, bluegrass feeling that was a large part of the French glitz in the 1930s. This is a fine addition to any collection." --D. Oscar Groomes, O's Place Jazz Newsletter

"...the group breathes new life into this slice of jazz with innovative arrangements and inspired playing... To top it off, the recording was engineered by Keith Johnson, whom I consider the world's greatest recording engineer." --Robert Harley, - Complete Review

THE HOT CLUB OF SAN FRANCISCO: Evan (Zeppo) Price, violin; Paul (Pazzo) Mehling, solo guitar; Jeff Magidson & Jason Vanderford, rhythm guitars; Ari Munkres, bass. GUEST ARTISTS: David Grisman, mandolin; Seth Asarno, bandoneon; Bill Carter, clarinet; Marc Caprone, trumpet; Clint Baker, trombone/tuba.

TRACK LIST: 1 Mystery Pacific; 2 Hot Lips; 3 I'm Happy Just To Dance With You; 4 Sway; 5 Number Two; 6 Souvenir de Villingen; 7 Tickle Toe; 8 Black and White; 9 Lullabye; 10 Rythme Futur; 11 Yerba Buena Bounce; 12 Stardust; 13 Borneo; 14 Georgia Cabin; 15 Improvisation #2; BONUS TRACKS: 16 Gong Oh; 17 JAM: Some Of These Days.

RR-109 HDCD - Yerba Buena Bounce - $16.98


Order a special set of Dick Hyman - 6 CDs $76.80
RR-33,50,59,72,84,116 - Sale does not apply to this item.


Dick Hyman is known throughout the jazz world as a musician's musician, who can play and improvise in almost any style of jazz or popular music. He is also known for his ballet and film scores, particularly for his work on Moonstruck and many Woody Allen films, including the latest, Everyone Says I Love You.


Thinking about


solo piano
Dick Hyman, one of the most accomplished and versatile musicians alive, is especially known as an authority on early jazz. After a lifetime of playing and studying the music of Bix Beiderbecke, Hyman announced he’d like to record for RR a solo program of music associated with Bix, including all five original pieces Bix wrote for piano. (Most likely, these are a recorded first.) Hyman arranged other numbers Bix performed with various groups, and plays and improvises upon these in his distinctive, brilliant style. The title track is an infectious Hyman original reminiscent of the period. An attractive bonus is a piano four-hands performance with Hyman’s friend and stride authority, Mike Lipskin

4/5 Stars "There's a ragtime bounce to the music . . . We hear it unencumbered, as this is 100% solo piano captured in all its glory. This session gives us a clear view of Bix as well as Hyman's talent both as a performer, composer and historian." --Oscar Groomes, O's Place Jazz Newsletter

"The musicianship is dazzling. At times, I just shook my head and laughed out loud at his level of virtuosity and musical invention — all in the service of the song. And the sound is swooningly beautiful." —Wayne Garcia, FI magazine (about Dick Hyman In Recital, RR-84)

"Throughout a busy musical career that got underway in the 1950s, Dick Hyman has functioned as pianist, organist, arranger, music director, and composer. His versatility in all of these areas has resulted in film scores, orchestral compositions, concert appearances, and well over 100 albums recorded under his own name. While developing a masterful facility for improvisation in his own piano style, Hyman has investigated ragtime and the earliest periods of jazz and has researched and recorded the piano music of Scott Joplin, Jelly Roll Morton, James P. Johnson, Zez Confrey, Eubie Blake – and for RR, programs of Duke Ellington and Fats Waller.

“Prof.” Keith Johnson recorded THINKING ABOUT BIX in the renowned facilities of Skywalker Sound in California, using as always his own custom-made microphones, electronics and high-resolution digital converters. The compact disc is encoded with the High Definition Compatible Digital (HDCD) process, and the 176.4 kHz/24-bit masters will be released soon in RR’s HRx series, for computerized music servers.

Track Listing - 1 Thinking About Bix; 2 Singin’ the Blues (Till My Daddy Comes Home); 3 Ostrich Walk; 4 I’m Coming, Virginia; 5 Jazz Me Blues; 6 Candlelights; 7 ‘Tain’t So, Honey, ‘Tain’t So; 8 Since My Best Gal Turned Me Down; 9 In the Dark; 10 Clementine (From New Orleans); 11 Lonely Melody; 12 In A Mist; 13 Sweet Sue (Just You); 14 Wringing’ and Twistin’; 15 Flashes; 16 Davenport Blues; 17 You Took Advantage of Me, with Mike Lipskin (piano four-hands).

YouTube of Dick Hyman at the 40th Bix Beiderbecke Memorial Jazz Festival, Davenport, August 2011.

RR-116 HDCD - Thinking About Bix - $16.98

This solo outing captures Hyman's brilliant improvisations on jazz standards, stride classics and an original tune available nowhere else! Recorded on a Boesendorfer Imperial Concert Grand, this release sets new standards for exciting, realistic piano sound.
RR-84 HDCD $16.98


With some of the greatest jazzmen who lived and played through The Age of Swing: Phil Bodner, Urbie Green, Milt Hinton, Butch Miles, Bucky Pizzarelli, Joe Temperly, Frank Wess and Joe Wilder. RR's all-time fastest seller! ****-1/2 --Downbeat
RR-59 HDCD $16.98


The hot, more up-tempo followup, featuring Peter Appleyard, Jay Leonhart, Nancy Marano, Butch Miles, Ken Peplowski, Bucky Pizzarelli, Randy Sandke, and Frank Wess.
RR-72 HDCD $16.98


...PLAYS DUKE ELLINGTON (piano solo)
"As close to perfection as humanly and technically possible. ****" --CD Review
RR-50 CD $16.98


...PLAYS FATS WALLER (piano solo)
"Excellent musicianship, top-quality material and grade-A sound." --Audio
RR-33 CD $16.98

RR-33 DCD $29.98 (see NOTE below)

NOTE: Hyman's solo performances, encoded on the Bösendorfer computer reproducing piano, were played back live for our microphones. For the Direct-to-CD (DCD) editions, the digitized signal was transmitted via microwave to the CD glass master as the music was happening. No recording tape of any kind was used, nor was the digital bitstream corrupted at any stage by copying or editing. The very digits generated at the recording session are engraved on the finished DCD.



A live performance captured by the budding "Professor" on his first vacuum-tube, three-channel analogue recorder on New Year's Eve, 1957. One of the most natural-sounding presentations ever of a live acoustic jazz group. Features: Jimmy Wyble, guitar; Jerry Dodgion reeds; Red Wootten, bass; John Markham, drums. "The sound is spectacular. 8 / 9" --CD Review
RR-8 CD $16.98




Master percussionist Jim Brock and "Prof." Johnson have created soundscapes so real, you can step inside the music. Vibrant, steamy and sensual, this contemporary instrumental jazz has more than a touch of the tropics. Produced by GRAMMY® Award winner Don Dixon. "Colorful, moody and evocative...warm, sensual and romantic." -- Modern Drummer


Brock's multi-hued percussion is joined by the soaring guitar sounds of composer/guitarist Van Manakas. Upbeat grooves and many world-jazz flavors make this a varied, exciting sound experience.
"Clever, classy, and great fun."-- Audio/Video Interiors

Sound Samples / Downloads -



A multi-faceted statement by these important artists, this is also a tribute to the late reed master Joe Farrell. It covers a lot of ground, from tuneful Brazilian toe-tappers to free-form, wailing bebop. Features guitarist Jose Neto. "...Authenticity and musical richness in every bar." --Stereophile



Percussion-rich and danceable, Redheads music is hard to describe, but easy to like: it's jazz, it's Latin, it's R & B, but mostly it's FUN!

Their debut album of off-the-wall originals. "They certainly kindle the urge to dance...wonderfully funky...state-of-the-art sound." --Stereophile


More "electric" than their first album -- in every sense! "Fine musicianship, solid ideas, and a sense of humor...they really know how to show you a good time." --JazzTimes



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